Expect plenty of heart from Jo Harman at The Spring

Jo Harman
Jo Harman
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Sometimes it can take a major life event to make you follow your dream.

For blues-soul singer Jo Harman it was the death of her father.

Jo, who will be performing at the Spring Arts Centre in Havant tomorrow night with her band The Connection, says: ‘I’ve been singing professionally now for about four or five years.

‘I went to university and did a degree, then lots of things changed in my life. I lost my father and it made me reassess what I wanted to do – I decided to do whatever made me happy.

‘It’s been a long journey, but I’m finally at the point where I know my direction and who I am.’

Her debut album Dirt On My Tongue was released in March 2013 to great acclaim at the start of what turned out to be a very busy year for Jo.

She played at more than 40 festivals around Europe, including a slot at BluesFest at the Royal Albert Hall, alongside the likes of Robert Plant, Van Morrison and Bobby Womack – the latter set is about to be released as a live album.

Jo explains: ‘We were asked to do BluesFest last year and Radio2 had a massive involvement in it and wanted to broadcast it.

‘To be able put out an album recorded by the BBC, how often does that happen?

‘It’s such a representation of the band – nothing’s been mixed or fixed. You hear mistakes and unique things, things change in every show, it captures the moment.

‘Sometimes at a blues festival, it’s about a guy on stage having a good noodle, but we’re all about the songs.

‘I write songs from the heart, and that’s what we try and put across.

‘Everything comes down to the song.’

But Jo is now looking towards her second album proper and hoping to release it next year.

And she has recently signed to V2 in Europe where her stable mates include Adele, Mumford and Sons and Queens of the Stone Age. ‘There’s a little bit of pressure for the second album,’ she says. ‘The first one was received so well, so I am a bit nervous’

‘I have been writing a bit, not as much as I would like, but there’s about seven or eight tunes of potential second album material.

‘A couple of them are getting played in the new show.’

In the meantime, she’ll be bringing ‘her boys’, and a mix of everything from ‘intimate ballads to full on stompers’ to the Spring on tomorrow.

Doors at 8pm.

Tickets are £12.50 from (023) 9247 2700 or at thespring.co.uk